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'My world turned upside down'

January 04, 2001

'My world turned upside down'



Two days before Thanksgiving 1999, Barbara Ann Trumpower of Greencastle, Pa., got a diagnosis that changed her life.

After battling an infection, a urine test showed high levels of glucose in her body. She had diabetes.

"My world turned upside down," said Trumpower, 52. "I was absolutely crushed."

Earlier that year, Trumpower started experiencing some symptoms of diabetes, including seeing "stars." She noticed that her bruises took longer to heal, and "I was hungry a lot," she said.

Even though her father had diabetes, she never thought that's what was happening to her.

Trumpower had nutritional counseling, through which she learned to limit white bread, pasta and sweets in her diet, and add more vegetables and salads.

She still makes sweet treats for her family, but doesn't indulge.

"I like to cook and give it away," Trumpower said. "There's more to life than food."

She walks three to four times a week and parks away from store entrances.

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Trumpower has lost 80 pounds since her diagnosis. She takes Glucophage, an oral medication, once a day, and said her blood-sugar levels have been good.

"I take my health seriously," she said.

She also attends monthly diabetes support group meetings at Robinwood Medical Center in Hagerstown.

"Every time I go, I learn something," she said.

The best advice she has for those who are diagnosed with diabetes is to follow their doctors' orders.

"You cannot afford not to listen. Your life, your health, your family, depend on it," Trumpower said.

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